October 05, 2015

#TPP — one reason a #wingnut replacing Boehner as Speaker might be nice

Left-neoliberals, and even a few supposed non-neoliberals, along with right-neoliberals, are doing huzzahs and handsprings over a group of Pacific Rim nations OKing the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The deal as drafted supposedly addresses an earlier concern that China could back-door auto parts through South Korea. Let's see on that.

It still seems toothless, like previous such agreements, on labor rights, environmental rights, human rights and currency issues. (Well, currency wasn't quite such an issue with NAFTA or WTO, but is now, even if China's not part of the TPP. It's got a special track to join, and currency will be a worry with it.)

Why do I actually salute a possible wingnut replacing John Boehner as speaker of the House?

First, the Religious Right portion of wingnuts have, on paper at least, been concerned about human rights.

Second, many wingnuts have, in general, been skeptical about China's rise to power.

So, I must disagree with the likes of Chris Tomlinson.

First, this may, or may not, force China to "play by U.S. rules."

Second, even if it does force that, they're neoliberal rules which scoff at organized labor, don't protect the environment, and ignore human rights.

This is clearly the case with environmental issues. TPP, like NAFTA, as Canada has done, allows for various government lawsuits against the environmental regulations of other countries. Per the link, yes, it's possible that Paris climate talks will negotiate around that, but, if you really expect that to be the case, I have an unpolluted river in China to sell you.

Maybe the defunding or de-investment drive will gain momentum. It eventually did with South Africa, but South Africa is a lot smaller than the US, let alone the whole neoliberalized "West."

Third, we don't know all that it says! Kind of "fun," for the neoliberal insiders, to tout what they hide. "Fun" for neolib outsiders to tout "free trade" on blind faith, I guess.

Whether any or all of this is enough to derail the TPP in Congress or not, I don't know. Donald Trump's opposition may help.

Maybe a coalition of wingnuts and Bernie Sanders-led true liberals can kill this, assuming it needs killing. I don't hold my breath, though.

Speaking of opposition, let's see Hillary Clinton be a squish on this issue.

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